Harbor Freight ... huh?

Jul 11, 2001
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#1
I've bought a lot of things from them over the years. From their B&M stores. One time I made an online order, 15 years ago.

I have a pair of gloves from them I really like. Branded Hardy, they are black work gloves.



I like these for bicycling, skating, in the gym. Heck, I think I can use these in the kitchen when handling hot items. Could use them in the yard. They seem to last and last. They don't stink (something that leather gloves seem to do after a while). They don't get nasty looking like leather gloves or toughen with dirt.

The nearest HF is around 15 miles, I think. l just never get out their way. They send me mailers all the time (emails too, but I don't look at those, I do glance at the ad they have in every Sunday's SF Chronicle). A mailer said they had a special on these, a buck off. I got the idea a couple weeks ago to maybe order them online, save a trip. I ordered 9 pairs (I use gloves a lot), $4.99 each, total shipping charge ($6.99) didn't change from 1 pair to 9 pairs. 10, it goes up. So I order 9 pairs.

Yesterday, 9 separate boxes appear on my front porch! Way to run a business!

Harbor Freight shipment of Hardy gloves.jpg
 
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UsandThem

Super Moderator
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May 4, 2000
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#2
Based on their employees in store that I've seen at my location, this doesn't surprise me at all.

One employee at my local one always parks his car in the fire lane in front of the store (no parking signs up everywhere, and painted on the road). I don't know how he hasn't been towed or ticketed yet (outside of it being in a rough part of town, so police are probably too busy for stuff like this).

The first few times I thought it was a customer, but then I saw him pull up and park one day while I was shopping.
 
Jul 11, 2001
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#3
Based on their employees in store that I've seen at my location, this doesn't surprise me at all.

One employee at my local one always parks his car in the fire lane in front of the store (no parking signs up everywhere, and painted on the road). I don't know how he hasn't been towed or ticketed yet (outside of it being in a rough part of town, so police are probably too busy for stuff like this).

The first few times I thought it was a customer, but then I saw him pull up and park one day while I was shopping.
The HF I have gone to the most seems to employ a lot of kids. Seem like high school kids, their first job. They seem sweet enough. Of course, there are some older manager types around. If I go there I take my phone and use the GPS, I don't venture into those parts often.
 

UsandThem

Super Moderator
Super Moderator
May 4, 2000
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#4
The HF I have gone to the most seems to employ a lot of kids. Seem like high school kids, their first job. They seem sweet enough. Of course, there are some older manager types around. If I go there I take my phone and use the GPS, I don't venture into those parts often.
The ones at the store I go to, some are in their 20s, but most of them are in the 40-50 range. But when they have items on coupon (which is like 99.5% of the time), they have some great deals. I buy things like work gloves and miscellaneous tools for my garage there. I don't know if I would ever trust the quality of some things like generators though.

Thankfully I usually research everything before I go, because the couple of times I've had to ask questions, I get the deer in a headlight look. :p
But I think that's becoming the norm at most retailers anymore, even at places like Lowes and Home Depot. At least at Harbor Freight, it's pretty easy to at least find an employee.
 

eng2d2

Senior member
Nov 7, 2013
909
9
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#5
The HF I have gone to the most seems to employ a lot of kids. Seem like high school kids, their first job. They seem sweet enough. Of course, there are some older manager types around. If I go there I take my phone and use the GPS, I don't venture into those parts often.
This is not true in our stores or other stores I visited. Never really see kids working there. When I was in Fremont for business I park close to harbor and did not see kids working there as well. Most are dedicated older employees. There were women there. Lots of gem at harbor freight. I bought and took a lot of free stuff from them. Must have 7 led flashlight from them.
 
Jul 12, 2006
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#6
But I think that's becoming the norm at most retailers anymore, even at places like Lowes and Home Depot.
D: AHHHHHH why does this keep happening? ...what has happened to the common grammar in the last ~4 years or so where I've noticed this random, absurd and nonsensical abuse of "anymore" in so many obviously senseless places? lol--does this sound right to anyone? just think about it...please read that sentence again to yourself, lol (not just you, the two dozen or so people that keep typing that crap on these forums) :D

anyway, I digress. I agree otherwise, lol. I try to limit my visits to HF and HD and, unfortunately now, Lowes. It's just impossible to trust quality and advice these days. I've still got some really good local hardware stores around, and I try to go to them and they are always amazing. Lowes...still kinda OK and for the big boxes, I'd much rather go to them than anywhere else, but they are the least convenient for me right now. HF does have some great stuff from time to time, and in general, just have to be picky.
 
Mar 11, 2004
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#7
D: AHHHHHH why does this keep happening? ...what has happened to the common grammar in the last ~4 years or so where I've noticed this random, absurd and nonsensical abuse of "anymore" in so many obviously senseless places? lol--does this sound right to anyone? just think about it...please read that sentence again to yourself, lol (not just you, the two dozen or so people that keep typing that crap on these forums) :D

anyway, I digress. I agree otherwise, lol. I try to limit my visits to HF and HD and, unfortunately now, Lowes. It's just impossible to trust quality and advice these days. I've still got some really good local hardware stores around, and I try to go to them and they are always amazing. Lowes...still kinda OK and for the big boxes, I'd much rather go to them than anywhere else, but they are the least convenient for me right now. HF does have some great stuff from time to time, and in general, just have to be picky.
Quoth the Zinfamous, nevermore.
 
Mar 11, 2004
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#8
A Harbor Freight opened up in an area we drive by quite often and I'd seen another next to one of the Goodwills we check out time to time. I'd heard of them (mixed things, like you can find some good stuff but its kinda a crapshoot on the stuff being quality or not), but haven't ever checked one out. Probably will next time I need a tool or something.
 
Jan 18, 2000
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#9
Visited a HF in the Bay area 2012 and signed in for notification of sales via e-mail.. Not familiar with the brands they sell. Visited a few months ago near my place (Tinley Park, IL) to buy some rechargeable AAA and AA batteries.
 
Mar 11, 2004
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#10
Also, OP, its ok you can just admit those are your "wanking gloves" as the UKers would say. I mean, come on (ha!), Hardy gloves? I'm surprised they're not white though...
 
Nov 30, 2004
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#11
It is what it is. Chinese junk, but at least they're honest about it. Most of the "American" brands are Chinese junk also, but you pay American prices. I use their lead acid jump boxes daily at work, and they work great. I also get gloves from them. All in all, I'm pretty happy with most of the stuff I've gotten there.
 
Jul 11, 2001
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#12
D: AHHHHHH why does this keep happening? ...what has happened to the common grammar in the last ~4 years or so where I've noticed this random, absurd and nonsensical abuse of "anymore" in so many obviously senseless places? lol--does this sound right to anyone? just think about it...please read that sentence again to yourself, lol (not just you, the two dozen or so people that keep typing that crap on these forums) :D
Chafing anymore?
 
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Jul 11, 2001
21,931
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#13
A Harbor Freight opened up in an area we drive by quite often and I'd seen another next to one of the Goodwills we check out time to time. I'd heard of them (mixed things, like you can find some good stuff but its kinda a crapshoot on the stuff being quality or not), but haven't ever checked one out. Probably will next time I need a tool or something.
I've saved a lot of money buying tools there. Some reason around here they seem to avoid densely populated areas full of city types. It's the DIY rural/semi-rural clientele that float their boat. A pretty fair percentage of my tools I've gotten there.
 
Jul 11, 2001
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#14
Also, OP, its ok you can just admit those are your "wanking gloves" as the UKers would say. I mean, come on (ha!), Hardy gloves? I'm surprised they're not white though...
No no no... White would only show dirt. These are pretty tough, I must say. The pair I've had a few years look great, and seem like they'll last just years more. The only thing that's showing their age particularly is the velcro wrist closure system. Like velcro does, it isn't as tacky as originally. Still works, though, but have to press harder. They're comfortable. And the X-Large fits me well. They even come in XX-Large. Weird. Most gloves I've bought stop at X-Large, and a good percentage of the time X-Large are too tight for me. I haven't tried the XX-Large on these, but I think I'm good with X-Large.
 

kn51

Senior member
Aug 16, 2012
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#15
First rule of thumb with HF is their Pittsburgh Pro hand tools are pretty good. And their tool boxes/chests are a bargain. Screwdrivers not so much

Second rule...anything that they have that are powered by electricity is quite a dicey situation.

Third rule...the batteries they sell are crap.

That's about all you need to know. Roll in and get the waft of chinese plastic as you enter the store and use your 20% off coupon and whatever freebie you have in the mailer.
 
Jul 11, 2001
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#16
anyway, I digress. I agree otherwise, lol. I try to limit my visits to HF and HD and, unfortunately now, Lowes. It's just impossible to trust quality and advice these days. I've still got some really good local hardware stores around, and I try to go to them and they are always amazing. Lowes...still kinda OK and for the big boxes, I'd much rather go to them than anywhere else, but they are the least convenient for me right now. HF does have some great stuff from time to time, and in general, just have to be picky.
Harbor Freight does have online reviews, which seriously helps if you bother to check them out. They'll tell you a shit-ton more than the help in the store. They can tell you where something is, that's all I ask of them.
 
Jul 11, 2001
21,931
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#17
First rule of thumb with HF is their Pittsburgh Pro hand tools are pretty good. And their tool boxes/chests are a bargain. Screwdrivers not so much

Second rule...anything that they have that are powered by electricity is quite a dicey situation.

Third rule...the batteries they sell are crap.

That's about all you need to know. Roll in and get the waft of chinese plastic as you enter the store and use your 20% off coupon and whatever freebie you have in the mailer.
Electric stuff... well, check the online reviews by customers. Dig, I bought at least 4 of their $9.99 angle grinders when I renovated my garage. They work! With one, if I'm using various accessories, I'd have to change the tip again and again. With 4, not necessary! $9.99 (on sale, and they go on sale frequently, have coupons)! They work. Read the reviews, get the skinny. For one thing, I opened them up and packed with bearing grease to extend the life.
 

eng2d2

Senior member
Nov 7, 2013
909
9
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#18
Should I get their oscillating tool? I saw a guy who work on my gate and all he use is oscillating tool (dewalt). Amazing tool.
 
Jul 11, 2001
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#19
Should I get their oscillating tool? I saw a guy who work on my gate and all he use is oscillating tool (dewalt). Amazing tool.
I have two oscillating tools. Have to get into them. Saw so much stuff online about how indispensable people find them once they get into them. I bought a bunch of accessories for them.

The ones I bought:

Amazon - FERM Power Tools OTM1005 Ferm Oscillating Multitool Kit - 2.3A -16 Accessories - Led-Light - Dust Extractor - Storage Case, $26.35

Ebay -- Rockwell Sonicrafter F80 Oscillating Multi-Tool 12pc Kit RK5151K 4.3 AMP New $109.99 free shipping
 
Jan 3, 2001
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#20
Based on their employees in store that I've seen at my location, this doesn't surprise me at all.

One employee at my local one always parks his car in the fire lane in front of the store (no parking signs up everywhere, and painted on the road). I don't know how he hasn't been towed or ticketed yet (outside of it being in a rough part of town, so police are probably too busy for stuff like this).

The first few times I thought it was a customer, but then I saw him pull up and park one day while I was shopping.
Yeah...that's my experience too. I deal with it though because Pittsburgh brand tools are actually really good and dirt cheap. Just got in on their 3-ton low profile jack sale last week for $89. The thing is built better than the Arcan I paid $200+ for that everyone is recommending.
 
Jan 3, 2001
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#21
Should I get their oscillating tool? I saw a guy who work on my gate and all he use is oscillating tool (dewalt). Amazing tool.
This is my FAVORITE TOOL OF ALL TIME. It's like $15 and I think I use it once a week. Need a hole for an outlet in a wall? BZZZZZZZT. Need a stripped screw head removed from a board? BZZZZT. Need a PVC pipe cut quickly? BZZZZZT. They need to make a holster for this thing for men to instantly put holes in things :D
 
Jul 11, 2001
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#22
This is my FAVORITE TOOL OF ALL TIME. It's like $15 and I think I use it once a week. Need a hole for an outlet in a wall? BZZZZZZZT. Need a stripped screw head removed from a board? BZZZZT. Need a PVC pipe cut quickly? BZZZZZT. They need to make a holster for this thing for men to instantly put holes in things :D
Guess I gotta watch some videos. I have the tools, need the inspirations.
 

UsandThem

Super Moderator
Super Moderator
May 4, 2000
10,906
600
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#23
D: AHHHHHH why does this keep happening? ...what has happened to the common grammar in the last ~4 years or so where I've noticed this random, absurd and nonsensical abuse of "anymore" in so many obviously senseless places? lol--does this sound right to anyone? just think about it...please read that sentence again to yourself, lol (not just you, the two dozen or so people that keep typing that crap on these forums) :D
Oops!

 

Kaido

Elite Member & Kitchen Overlord
Feb 14, 2004
42,740
250
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#24
I just picked up a plunge router from Harbor Freight that can take 1/2 shanks (the wussy ones only take 1/4") on sale for like $70 on sale the other day, bananas:

https://www.harborfreight.com/2-1-2-half-hp-plunge-router-37793.html

Be sure to check for coupons!

https://www.retailmenot.com/view/harborfreight.com

I'd like to build my own house in the next year or two, so I'm starting to learn some more advanced woodworking tools. Right now I'm working on moldings...I'm amazed at how easy it is to make baseboards, door moldings, crown moldings, etc. out of basic strips of wood. Right now, I'm testing a method to embed a smarthouse-controllable LED lightstrip in a groove inside the crown molding to create a customizable indirect cove lightning effect with different colors. Sure beats paying $2 per foot! I'll be putting the router into a custom lift box that doubles as a mini router table, and can also fit into a larger work table:

 
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